Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

High-area polymer films with anti-reflective properties created with roll-to-roll plasma-etching

24.04.2012
Roll-to-roll plasma-etching creates nanostructures for favorable-cost modification of high-area polymer films with anti-reflective properties.
At the international vacuum conference SVC 2012 researchers of Fraunhofer FEP present the PolAR process: A method to provide high-area polymer films with anti-reflective properties.

Rain, darkness, the dazzling lights of an oncoming car - strong light reflection in such situations can be irritating or even become dangerous. Effective anti-reflection is not only important for spectacles and windshields, but also provides optimal light incidence for solar cells, solar heating panels, and triple glazing.
The Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Optics and Precision Engineering IOF in Jena and the Fraunhofer Institute for Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP in Dresden have undertaken a joint project with industrial partners including Leica Microsystems, Rodenstock, and Southwall Europe. The project, entitled PolAR (reference 16/N0723), was funded by the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi) and aimed to develop a new, efficient, continuous roll-to-roll process for making large-area anti-reflecting polymer films.

The optimized plasma-etching process creates a structure on the polymer films, whose effect is based on the moth eye principle. The process enhances the base roughness of the polymer film and generates nanostructures, namely minute crests and troughs. As the nanostructures are smaller than the wavelength of visible light, they do not act as scattering centers and the film remains clear. At the same time, the structures cause the refractive index between the film and external medium to change continuously. That has the consequence that the optical reflection of, for example, PET film is reduced from 12% to 0.2%. Up until now this could only be achieved by complex coating of films with a four-layer anti-reflection system. The flexibility of, in particular, thin films is also adversely affected by the latter. Besides being useful for films, plasma-etching is also suitable for giving curved substrates anti-reflective properties.
Although the moth eye principle has been known for a long time, the Fraunhofer researchers have made a decisive technological breakthrough by generating nanostructures on large surfaces using a process that is suitable for mass production. In roll-to-roll pilot plants, like those used at the Fraunhofer FEP, kilometer-long films can be made anti-reflective at a rate of several meters per minute. Dual magnetron systems, which are usually used in industry for vacuum coating processes, provide an effective and stable ion current over several hours. Using these sources, the base process developed at the Fraunhofer IOF was transferred to high-area substrates at Fraunhofer FEP. The process has already been successfully used on PET films, triacetate cellulose (TAC) films, fluoropolymer films (ETFE), and lacquered films.

Interested parties can visit our booth (no. 904) at the SVC 2012 conference in Santa Clara (California / USA) from 1 May to 3 May to see the anti-reflective films.

Scientific contact:
Dr. Matthias Fahland
Fraunhofer Institute for Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP
Phone +49 351 2586-135
matthias.fahland@fep.fraunhofer.de

Press contact:
Annett Arnold
Fraunhofer Institute for Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP
Phone +49 351 2586-452
annett.arnold@fep.fraunhofer.de

Annett Arnold | Fraunhofer Institut
Further information:
http://www.fep.fraunhofer.de

More articles from Trade Fair News:

nachricht Fraunhofer HHI with latest VR technologies at NAB in Las Vegas
24.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Nachrichtentechnik, Heinrich-Hertz-Institut, HHI

nachricht Kiel nano research at the Hannover Messe
21.04.2017 | Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel

All articles from Trade Fair News >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA's Fermi catches gamma-ray flashes from tropical storms

25.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers invent process to make sustainable rubber, plastics

25.04.2017 | Materials Sciences

Transfecting cells gently – the LZH presents a GNOME prototype at the Labvolution 2017

25.04.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>